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...four years ago I purchase a 16-35mm 1:2.8 L USM and to be honest after four years I truly believe I'm not getting to much out of this expensive lens.
I have seen on the internet pictures taken with that particular lens and they are awesome! So where is the problem, is it the camera or the photographer behind the camera??
I think it's a bit of both.
A full-frame camera like an EOS 5D would take better advantage of the lens than a small-frame camera like a Rebel, but some of the problem is also the way it's being used.
For example, in the first picture you posted you had your sensor sensitivity set for ISO 800. That's good for situations with dim light, but can result in "noisy" pictures. If you have enough light you can get better IQ (image quality) by using lower settings...ISO 100 or ISO 200, for example.
In that picture there was plenty of light outside (since the shutter speed was 1/250 second) but not enough light inside to match it. What you could have done is turned down the ISO to 200, slowed the shutter to 1/60 to match the ISO change, and then used flash to increase the light inside the room to match the light outside.
Or, instead of using flash, you could have taken two or more shots (with the camera on a tripod) at different shutter speeds and combined the best parts of each one into a single picture. That kind of "high dynamic range imaging" can be done in several different ways, so that's something to look into in more detail.
In the picture of the balcony there isn't a lot of noise, because there aren't any dark shadows, but ISO 800 surely wasn't needed there because your shutter speed was a blazing 1/1250. You only need fast shutter speeds like that if you're trying to stop fast-moving action like race cars or football players in motion.
In addition to lower ISO settings having less noise, you also get better (more saturated) colors, and more contrast, so the pictures look "snappier" or have more "pop" as some people like to say.
Before you think about getting a newer and more expensive camera, learn first how to get the best exposures you can get (the balance of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed) and how to create the best possible lighting (by using available light, and by adding your own).
Matching the look and feel of the light inside to the light outside is one of the most important aspects of architectural photography, but with some study and practice it can be done well, and you don't need a lot of expensive equipment to do it once you know how.
Edited on Feb 09, 2012 at 08:13 AM · View previous versions